Article

Imprinting


Imprinting is child's play

If these easy steps are followed, even an eight year old can imprint a new born foal,

as is shown by Emily van der Linde on her grandparents farm.


1. Establish that the mother is gentle and has no objection to her foal being handled..
Otherwise it is a good idea to get someone to hold her.

2. Approach cautiously making yourself as small and unthreatening as possible.

3. Imprinting can even begin with the little fellow sleeping, as long as no sudden movements
are made.

4. Most foals love being scratched above the tail and will soon show their pleasure and even
try to help.

5. Slowly move along the spine scratching firmly up to the neck , making sure the foal enjoys
every moment it.

6. Once the foal has started to relax you can move to every part of it's body, inside ears, under
the belly and even tapping the feet.

7. You can now ask the foal to pick up its feet, the hind legs are easiest, remembering to cup
the foot in your hand - do not grasp it.

8. It will now be a simple matter to slip on a halter and gently coax the foal to lead.

If all these moves are repeated for a few days you will have the foal 'eating out of your hand',
it will load easily and your farrier will thank you. The rest of the family can now join the
fun.